Sunday Debrief: Celebration Sunday (4/13/14)

“Through profound pain and loss, God has revealed his grace and mercy. The Transformation series has shown our family and myself that is is all God’s. Everything we have, everything we are is his. To God be the glory.” —One of our dozens of response cards from Celebration Sunday. 

We’ve finished the Transformation 2014 series. Some are rejoicing that it is over. Others are saddened. The rest of you are in the middle and wondering what is next. 🙂  I’m grateful for all of you. 

If you weren’t here yesterday, you missed out on a sweet Sunday—one unlike our usual Sundays. Stories were told, people were challenged, and everyone was given an opportunity to say “this is how God has changed/is changing me” (writing that I thought, “Wait, this shouldn’t be ‘unlike our usual’”). The board of response cards has more than I’ve currently counted—dozens, but I’m not sure how many. 

To finish this series off I wanted to simply share four thoughts now that this is all finished. 

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Sunday Debrief: Trusting God Completely (3/16/14)

The world will come at you and remind you regularly that your life will not be fully satisfied until you have what it has. Then, after you get it, you’ll suddenly feel outdated, antiquated, unhealthy, poor, embarrassed, or something else ridiculous simply because you do not have the next thing it is offering you.

Discontentment rises to the surface, sets it sights on you, and fires away until you succumb. And believers together often have a much easier times talking about their new house, renovation, car, or any other thing than they actually do talking about the transformation of their hearts in Christ.

The reason? I’m not a doctor, but I think at least in part it is because we believe a lie–the lie that Jesus changing us is less attractive and important than the newest thing we have.

So what’s the solution? Trusting our savior and enjoying him. Let’s remind ourselves of the words of Christ through Paul.

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Sunday Debrief: Caught in a Trap (3/2/14)

I hope everyone enjoyed their (very cheap) Chinese finger trap. I saw people breaking them right after the service. You’re welcome. 

Getting rich (or dying while we try) isn’t just a trap that we may fall into, many of us already have. We fill our lives, or bank accounts, our homes, and our plates with things for us—with a constant need to gain more. Gordon Gekko infamously reminds us of this idea.

But not so for the Christian (or at least, we would hope it to not be so) . . .

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Sunday Debrief: Dealing With Worry (2/23/14)

I am amazed at the things in my own life that don’t align with what Jesus would want from those who follow him. None hit so close to home as the statements about worry from Matthew 6 (ok, a few actually do). 

I’d love to think that it were as easy as simply being happy instead of not worrying (and Robin Williams makes me think that perhaps it is), but I know it is much more complex than that. 

So what do we do if we can’t just “be happy?” . . .

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Sunday Debrief: Where’s Your Heart? (2/16/14)

If you were at our 10:45 service, you know that JP and Jennifer Harris are now at the top of the “People I Love and Owe a Few Lunches to” list. If you weren’t, then you’ll just have to wonder why.

On to Sunday!

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth,” says our Savior. We say, “Yeah, but you don’t know what it’s like to own an iPad, iMac, iPhone, MacBook, or car.” You’re right. Jesus didn’t own a car (at least not that I can see from the four Gospels). Jesus also didn’t own a closet. So what would he know about stuff?

“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.” Hebrews 4:15

So do we have a high priest who knows what it is like to be tempted with things? To have a place to lay his head? Tempted to find value in possessions rather than the father? Absolutely. And do you know what he says? Stuff rusts and disappears. . .

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(From my science experiment Sunday morning—it isn’t sweet tea. It’s rust.)

Jesus has much to say about where our hearts are. . .

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Sunday Debrief: A New Kind of Normal (2/9/14)

This past Sunday we kicked off our Transformation 2014 campaign. This isn’t your mama’s stewardship campaign. This is an all-out, months-in-the-making, idol-crushing look at how we handle our finances in light of Jesus and all he has done for us (not the “please give us your money so we can build a new building” campaign). 


This campaign idea actually started years ago in the minds and hearts of many in our church (though we’ve been working diligently the past eleven months in this unique expression). For years The Chapel has had folks who counsel people financially, and time and time again they’ve encountered people of all ages and financial situations who are in terrible—even idolatrous—financial situations. 

My brothers, this should not be. 

Rather than just preach at people and tell them to get their house in order, we wanted to take it a step further. We are also offering a tool to help our families consider their finances. That tool is Financial Peace University. So while we preach on Sundays around the issues of the heart regarding finance, our whole church is going through FPU at the same time (or as many as possible—currently around 600). . .

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